Assessment of a domestic violence telecare protection system from the victims’ perspective

Jorge Quintas • Pedro Sousa • Ana Guerreiro • Alexandra Leandro • Rita Faria



This article presents an evaluative study of the telecare protection system (TPS) implemented in Portugal as a protection order for domestic violence victims. A survey was applied to a representative sample of victims who were supported by the system (N = 171) and their responses were compared with those of domestic violence victims who did not benefit from it (N = 100). Victims were asked about their: (i) knowledge, expectations, and experiences with the implementation of the system; (ii) assessment of agencies’ activities, and (iii) levels of satisfaction, safety, and re-victimisation. TPS had an activation rate of 32% for emergencies. Victims with the TPS showed great expectation fulfilment and a very positive assessment of the demeanour and behaviour of police and other support agencies. Generally, very satisfied with the system, victims reported, however, relatively lower satisfaction with the police responses in specific emergencies. Victims reported that the actions of agencies involved in the system allow them to feel safer; nonetheless, they also reported stable and continued fear and risk of being victimised. Finally, victims benefiting from TPS significantly differed from victims who did not benefit from it in terms of physical re-victimisation (7% and 15%, respectively).